Dan 'Toasty'Forden and "Blue Honey"
・Animation. Game music．
Dan Forden, best known as the “Toasty!” voice (sometimes with his portrait) at Mortal Kombat—the popular video game franchise since 1992. He is the last guest composer we’re privileged to have this summer. Working as the Audio Director at Warner Bros.Games (Chicago), Dan has made tunes for Midway and William Games, such as: MK series, The Grid, and Injustice series at NetherRealm Studios.
From Arcade game to Pinball machine, Dan is like a walking encyclopedia of game history! Can you imagine writing music only by programming language 0 and 1? That’s how Dan started to compose for those famous arcade/pinball games, including: ‘Black Knight 2000’(1989), ‘The Machine: Bride of Pin-Bot’(1991), ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ (1993), ’Medieval Madness’ (1997), among others.
It’s particularly interesting when Dan shared his compositions for Mortal Kombat series, covering arcade game, console game, interactive 3D projection and video games—whose latest trailer (2019) is so lifelike that amazes you how rapid the technology evolution could be!
Besides the upcoming MK 11, the delicate character creation of ‘Injustice 2’ and its levelling-up sound design also broadened my horizons of Adaptive Music—so many techniques are worth getting familiar with!
Instead of creating soundtrack for game story, our task this time was to compose several ‘loopable’ tunes for typical situations in game: Explore, Combat, Choice, Victory and Death. Then operating those tracks smoothly on Wwise—the interactive audio software for games which we never learn before(!)
I was quite worried there would be tons of technical frustration when learning a new software in such short time, but the magic is it didn’t happen a lot—everyone managed to hand in their 1st Wwise project at the end ! And it’s so much fun to hear those music fade-in/out seamlessly by clicking our mouses randomly 🤗
Much appreciated for Dan’s organised and patient guidance—not just on Wwise workshop, but also on the rich resources, professional business advices, and very responsive feedback.
Knowing that I was about to create music & sound design for the competition in Cologne, Dan’s concise analysis and suggestions greatly helped me find the clear direction to compose. The title music of ‘Blue Honey’ below is the result that I’ve tried my best before the deadline ⏰ Listen by headphone is recommended.
Dan, thank you for revealing the secrets of fantasies behind the Games—the perhaps, most powerful medium that functions as a metaphor of our relationships with technologies and societies.
When I read my notes and those materials you taught in the class, I feel a whole new world unfolding in front of me, which invites me to dive in and create much more possibilities on arts and music :)
‘A small bee, allergic to pollen, discovers an extraordinary product that will dramatically impact the life of the hive...’ — Miel Bleu
◤ Miel Bleu / Blue Honey (2015) ◢
◕ Director : Daphné Durocher, Constance Joliff, Fanny Lhotellier
◕ European Talent Competition 2018, music above composed by Fionn. Han.
‘Blue Honey’ has won multiple awards worldwide. I like it very much and encourage you to watch the original version (4:40) to see how the adorable bees’ story points out the environmental issue resonantly. The original music is great as well, hope you’ll enjoy 🤸♂💡🤸♀
Dan Forden，來自芝加哥的格鬥遊戲聲音總監，是我們今年夏天邀請的最後一位作曲家。基本上Dan就是一部遊戲音樂的活字典，從我出生前流行的街機遊戲(arcade game)、九〇年代風靡一時的彈珠台(pinball machine)、千禧年後的遊戲機(console game)到現在持續進化的電玩(video game)，全都有Dan作曲的蹤跡！最有名的大概屬「真人快打/ 魔宮帝國」(Mortal Kombat)系列，每當魔蠍(Scorption)使出「Fatality」終結技前的”Toasty!”—Dan就是本尊(!)
不過，這三天像是打開一扇透明大門，不僅發現遊戲世界的浩瀚無窮(i.e.,格鬥類型只是千百種中的一種)，也體會到遊戲作為一種藝術形式的魅力(art form)，及這種藝術載體能表述複雜情感與生存狀態的無限潛能 🤺 以後有機會再慢慢跟大家介紹:)
前往 2019 🏇